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easy marinara sauce in jar on towel

Easy Marinara Sauce with Extra Veggies

Amy Palanjian
Serve this sauce with 1 pound of your family's favorite pasta for an easy and healthy dinner.
4.67 from 3 votes
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 30 mins
Total Time 40 mins
Course Dinner
Cuisine Italian
Servings 8 about 1.5 quarts
Calories 497 kcal


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 cups onion, carrot, butternut squash, sweet potato, bell pepper (any color but green) celery, and/or cauliflower (roughly chopped)
  • 29 ounces canned diced tomatoes with juices
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 pound pasta optional
  • Parmesan cheese optional


  • Heat the oil in a medium skillet over medium heat. Add the vegetables, stir, and cover. Cook for 10 minute or until mostly soft.
  • Remove lid and stir in the tomatoes. Bring to a simmer, reduce heat to medium low and place the lid so it's mostly covering the pot but not a tight seal. This will let some steam escape but will protect your cooktop from splatters. Simmer for 20-25 minutes or until everything is soft.
  • Puree with an immersion blender or in a regular blender. Season to taste with additional salt as needed.
  • Serve with 1 pound of cooked pasta and Parmesan cheese, if desired. 


  • To make Meat Sauce:
    Brown 1/2 pound ground beef or mild Italian sausage in Step 1 after you warm the oil. Proceed as directed.
  • To do this in a Slow Cooker:
    Double all ingredient amounts and add to the slow cooker. Cook on LOW for 6-8 hours or until everything is softened. Finish as directed in Step 3.
  • To make this into Pizza Sauce: Simmer the sauce for about 30-45 minutes longer on low, stirring occasionally, or until very thick. Add 1 teaspoon pizza seasoning.
  • Use veggies with colors like white, yellow, orange, and red that will blend together into a classic looking tomato sauce when combined with the canned tomatoes.
  • Double the recipe to make more and freeze the second half of the batch for a future week.
  • Use the same volume of diced fresh tomatoes, just simmer longer to allow the extra liquid to evaporate.
  • Serve with a pound of whichever kind of pasta your family prefers.
  • Add some protein to the pasta and sauce by adding canned white beans or chickpeas, warmed frozen peas, diced cooked chicken breast, meatballs, or even lentils.


Calories: 497kcalCarbohydrates: 58gProtein: 12gFat: 30gSaturated Fat: 4gPolyunsaturated Fat: 4gMonounsaturated Fat: 21gSodium: 4716mgPotassium: 3054mgFiber: 15gSugar: 39gVitamin A: 2929IUVitamin C: 108mgCalcium: 317mgIron: 13mg
Keyword marinara sauce recipe, tomato sauce
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